In 2015, more than 700,000 people across 70 countries raised in excess of $116 million dollars for nonprofits on #GivingTuesday. The philanthropic counterpart of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday 2016 will be here in just a few short weeks. Now is the time for nonprofits to finalize their strategy and prepare for a day of digital fundraising that will bolster their bottom line. Here are some quick tips to help you prepare for #GivingTuesday 2016.
Audit your prior #GivingTuesday campaigns
What online fundraising strategies worked well during prior years? Did Facebook drive the highest volume of donations? Were your largest gifts secured via email marketing? Did incorporating online video appeals featuring those who benefit directly from your products or services help to differentiate your cause and drive digital fundraising success? Learning from your successes, oversights and missteps during prior years will position your organization to achieve nonprofit marketing success on #GivingTuesday 2016.
Plan for alignment with your annual appeal
Many nonprofits distribute annual appeal letters between Thanksgiving and Christmas to bolster their fundraising totals for the calendar year. With #GivingTuesday falling inside this short window, it is important for nonprofits to align their #GivingTuesday and annual appeal letter strategies. Whether you opt to fundraise in support of the same program or service, or establish an umbrella theme for both campaigns, it is critical that donors don’t feel confused or asked to give one too many times.
Be aware of the competition
Whether you are an arts education organization or a social services cause, there are likely other nonprofits in your area doing similar work – and asking donors to invest in similar outcomes. While donor loyalty is an undeniable part of the equation, understanding your donors’ capacity to give (i.e. how much and how often) will help to hone your #GivingTuesday ask and minimize your chances of being dominated by the competition.
Conceptualize your donor acknowledgment strategy
With “please give” must come “thank you for your support.” In past years, some nonprofits have sent audience-wide “thank you” emails throughout #GivingTuesday, touting their successes for the day thus far and advising how much further they had to go to reach their goals. Others have opted to make personal thank you calls throughout the day to build upon the goodwill of the occasion and the holiday season. Others have taken a hybrid approach and there are, of course, the organizations who enlist clients themselves to send handwritten thank you notes to donors to further personalize the experience. When developing your #GivingTuesday strategy, ensure saying “thank you” is part of your overall plan.
A well-executed #GivingTuesday campaign can play an integral role in helping nonprofits to achieve their year-end fundraising goals. By developing a campaign that is strategic, creative and resonates with donors, nonprofits can strengthen existing relationships, cultivate new donors and leverage social fundraising to maximize their impact on the communities that they serve.